I remember when I loved Lance. When he was someone I looked up to. When he was a superhero on a bike. I remember watching him go for #5 thinking my world would end if he didn’t win. I remember the deep connection I felt to his cancer survivorship having watched my Grandmother perish from the disease when I was 13. I remember the strength I used to feel watching the yellow Livestrong bracelet dance on my wrist before the fad started and after it died down.
As I sit here right now, though, only a few months after the big announcement, my Lance tolerance cup is well over filled and spilling out onto the table and all over the floor. He is no longer the hero with which I once identified.
Who really believes he is coming back solely to further the Livestrong mission into a global initiative? Don’t feel bad if you still do. I bought into it at first, also. But now? No way. In the dozens upon dozens of articles I’ve read over the last 2 and a half months, I have heard very little about cancer. I’ve relived all the old doping allegations. I’ve heard about how stupid the French are. But, nothing so far about cancer. I’ve been reminded about his 7 Tour de France victories (as if I could forget). I’ve heard about old and new disputes with Greg Lemond, another self serving narcissist. No cancer. More doping, more insistance of not doping. We heard a blurb about his charity working together with Simeoni’s charity, but that was after we had to witness the back and forth and back and forth over the 2004 Tour controversy. More doping, no proof of doping, more allegations of doping, the French are stupid. No cancer. Hey look! Lance is in a wind tunnel! More doping, more arrogance. More Astana controversy. No, I swear this is about cancer. Now he's afraid of French fans. AURGH! Enough already!
Lance’s hero status for me has gone downhill since his retirement. Not because his incredible sporting accomplishments have diminished in my mind, but because the yellow bracelet is no longer dancing on my wrist. It went in the garbage the day I read that he reportedly allowed his 6 year old daughter to take Ashley Olsen to show and tell at her Texas school. The only thing Lance seems to care about more than his cancer charity is his own face. I have to agree with Mike Celizic of msnbc.com; Lance has become a “drama queen” and a “narcissist.” There’s simply no deep connection to have with either of those.